Paulie Malignaggi Destroys Vyacheslav Senchenko; Wins WBA Welterweight Crown With 9th-Round TKO

By James Slater: Who says Paulie Malignaggi can’t punch!? Tonight in Ukraine, the 31-year-old “Magic Man” used his full bag of tricks, and some of his rarely seen punching power, to snatch the WBA welterweight title with what was arguably the finest performance of his long, up and down pro career.

Making Brooklyn proud, Malignaggi boxed out of his skin in taking the previously unbeaten Senchenko to school, busting his face up and ultimately stopping him. The ending came midway through the 9th, as ref Steve Smoger dived in, seeing how the 35-year-old defending champion’s left eye was in a shocking state and how he was taking too many flush shots.

Malignaggi, who has put himself back into the elite, is now 31-4(7). Senchenko, losing for the first time, is now 32-1(21).

Malignaggi promised his fans he’d be returning home to New York with the world title, and he delivered in sensational style. Scoring the 7th stoppage of his brittle hands-hampered career, Paulie boxed a near perfect fight tonight. Boxing Senchenko’s head off with his swift left jab, his right hand leads, his body shots and his all-round combos, Malignaggi totally bewildered the defending champion.

Aside from the 4th and, when his corner told Senchenko to turn it on, the 7th, Malignaggi never lost a round. Whatever did get through in the 4th and 7th, Malignaggi took well, while he made his man miss most of his shots. By the 7th, Senchenko’s left eye was a balloon, and Malignaggi knew he was on his way to the biggest win of his career.

Enjoying himself pretty much all the way through the contest, Malignaggi was just way too fast, way too clever and way too good for Senchenko; a decent fighter he made look very ordinary. Unable to see the right hands coming, Senchenko was a sitting duck and “The Magic Man” showed no remorse.

A superb win for Malignaggi, one that should inspire a hero’s welcome for the former IBF 140-pound ruler. A considerable underdog going into tonight’s fight, Paulie rose to the occasion and defied the odds like never before.

Expect more great fights from Malignaggi - a man who has just added extra intrigue/excitement to the talent-rich 147-pound division. As for Senchenko; it will be a long, hard road back.

Golden Boy had faith in Malignaggi, and tonight Paulie showed them why.

Undercard action:

Samir Ziani UD 12 Andriy Kudryavtsev
Stanyslav Kashtanov TKO 7 Jorge Rodriguez Olivera
Volodymyr Kravets UD 12 Abdoulaye Soukouna
Oleh Yefimovych UD 12 Sergio Carlos Santillan
Iago Kiladze KO 2 Julien Perriaux

Article posted on 29.04.2012

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